Local school girl cycles Coast to Coast to feed Ethiopian street children

Posted by Francesca Rutherford on Tuesday 5th September 2017

Huge congratulations and a massive thank you to Sky!


10 year old local school girl, Sky Silcock, spent her Easter holidays tackling the 74 mile route from Barnstaple to Paignton to raise funds to provide breakfast for destitute street children in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The final fundraising total was an incredible £1,300!

Sky decided she wanted to raise funds to help feed street children after learning about the charity at her school, The Manor C of E School, Coalpit Heath. 

Sky said “I decided to raise money for the children in Ethiopia as I know how important a breakfast is to help you concentrate and start the day right.  The street children are really poor and sometimes the breakfast is all they get to eat all day. All my family and friends sponsored me and I managed to raise over £1,300.  My little brother and mum were my support crew. ”

Supported by her family Sky spent months preparing for her big ride by training at weekends and eating healthily.  The ride took her 2 days and she was met in Paignton by family who cheered and cycled with her for the last few miles.

Sky’s dad, Adam, said “Sky decided that she wanted to raise money for Ethiopiaid after hearing about them at school.  Our first impression was that it may have been a bit of a flash in the pan idea but, Sky was determined.  After several months the determination was still there and we developed the idea of a mini coast to coast bike ride.  Sky is very confident on her bike and had completed her bikeability level 2 a year early and was the driving force behind the training for the ride.  When we started the sponsorship forms, Sky had set herself a target of raising £100.  Due to the generosity and support of all of those who know her, she’s raised over £1,300 which includes £100 which she collected along the ride, from complete strangers. 

On the ride, Sky was faced with several different terrains and around Dartmoor, had some very challenging hills to climb.  Although tough and energy zapping, she carried on to ensure she completed her challenge. 

We are all very proud of Sky for her determination to help others and to complete what she set out to do.  We would like to thank all of those who supported Sky whether that was through route planning, sponsorship, meeting us along the route, and being at the finish line.”

“We were really delighted that Sky was inspired to help the children we support in Ethiopia.  I have visited the street children’s breakfast project myself and have seen firsthand how important it is for the 850 children who turn up every morning for their milk, roll and banana.  These children, some as young as 3 or 4 years old, live in abject poverty on the streets or in slums in the city.  They arrive at the project for their free breakfast every day before they head off to school.  It costs around 25p to 30p to provide a breakfast for one child so Sky’s fundraising will help provide over 4,000 breakfasts.” - Lisa Cousins, Ethiopiaid’s Executive Director

There are approximately 150,000 children living on the streets in Ethiopia and 60,000 of those are in Addis Ababa.  More than half of those children do not have access to adequate shelter, food or education.

Ethiopiaid provides funding to ‘Hope Enterrpises’ to help feed and school thousands of street children who are living in doorways, bus stations and makeshift shelters.   Through their ‘Ladders of Hope’ approach they help some of the most disadvantaged children with quality education and training.  It all starts with the street children’s breakfast where six days a week, 850 homeless children receive two bread rolls, milk and a banana. The breakfast is an incentive to attend the informal literacy and numeracy classes that are held afterwards. By removing the constant pressure of finding money for food, the children are given time to learn so that they can progress to primary and secondary education. The Ladders of Hope programme helps children and youths in Addis Ababa work themselves out of poverty. 

Find out more about our education partners here.

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